Are Celebrity Chef Restaurants Any Good? Tales from Drew’s Honeymoon [PICTURES]
My wife Robyn and I are huge fans of food shows. You know, like "Hell's Kitchen," "Top Chef," "Kitchen Nightmares," and pretty much anything on Food Network. All these celebrity chefs on TV own at least one restaurant somewhere in the world; and Robyn and I have always wanted to see if these restaurants lived up to all the televised hype. Luckily, on our honeymoon in Las Vegas, we finally got the chance!
One of our favorite celebrity chefs is Gordon Ramsay, so we knew we had to try at least one of his three Vegas restaurants. We agreed that we would try his steakhouse for sure, and maybe one of the others if there was time.
Fortunately, there was time.
As we were walking through Caesar's Palace, we literally stumbled upon Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill. So, of course, we had to give it a try. We weren't super-hungry, so we bellied up to the bar and ordered some drinks and appetizers.
We had a great time.
The bartenders were awesome, the drinks were unique and delicious, and even the appetizers were impeccable. They even made us a scotch egg (a softboiled egg, wrapped in sausage and fried), which wasn't supposed to be on the menu until dinnertime. If this was the experience we were getting at Ramsay's casual pub, we couldn't wait to see what his upscale steakhouse had in store for us.
A couple days later, it was time to head to the Paris hotel to see "Jersey Boys," and then have a late dinner at Gordon Ramsay Steak. The first thing I noticed was how loud it was in there. Maybe it was the late hour, but the restaurant definitely had a nightclub-type atmosphere. Most of the noise came from the bar area, but it spilled over into the dining room pretty easily. However, the noise would turn out to be the only less-than-desirable thing about our dinner.
From start to finish, our meal was spectacular. Even the complimentary bread-and-butter plate was gourmet and delicious. We started with a Caesar salad, which was topped with (yet another) scotch egg. We then sipped our tasty drinks (which were ordered via an iPad at our table) as we waited for the main course, beef wellington. It took about 45 minutes to prepare (which we were told beforehand), but it was entirely worth the wait. It was a perfectly-cooked medium rare, and Robyn and I savored every bite.
When we got the bill, we discovered we had been charged $9 apiece for the three bottles of water we had consumed; but I decided I would rather have paid for bottled water than wash down such an amazing meal with Vegas tap water (because, in case you've never been there, Vegas tap water is disgusting).
So overall, Robyn and I loved our celebrity chef restaurant experience. We've heard that some of the other ones aren't very good; but Gordon Ramsay definitely knows what he's doing. We can't wait to go back!